In a statement, it says that the practices were employed following fires in central parts of the country that left consumers without services. It was found that, when the services were restored, Meo provided false information to consumers, namely that it was not possible to provide fixed telephony in isolation and required the contracting of a package of services. This was that was likely to lead consumers to entering into new contracts, which happened in some cases.
ANACOM adds that “the practices adopted by Meo are especially serious, taking into account the vulnerability of consumer subscribers, who were deprived of electronic communications services for months, following a catastrophe that culminated in the destruction of lives, material goods, forest and green areas, which were the livelihood of a large part of the population residing in the areas affected by the fires of October 2017. Some of the affected consumers are still particularly vulnerable due to their age and the fact that they live alone, in isolated places, which ended up being without communications during months”.
ANACOM says that a single fine it is allowed to legally impose (€24,000) “is not a sufficient deterrent to the adoption of such practices in the communications sector and limits the preventive effect that is intended to be achieved with the application of sanctions – which demonstrates the need to review this regime”.